FILE PHOTO: Sergei Lavrov (R) and Iran Regime's Amir Abdollahian during a meeting at the Reception House of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. REUTERS./

 – Russia and Iran’s foreign ministers on Sunday called for a ceasefire in Gaza and said that urgent assistance must be given to the civilian population there.

Russia said Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov spoke to Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian at the request of Tehran.

“During the conversation, main attention was focused on the current situation in the zone of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” Russia’s foreign ministry said.

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“General concern was expressed about the ongoing armed confrontation in the Gaza Strip,” it said. “The need for an early ceasefire and urgent assistance to the affected civilian population was stressed.”

Russia, which has relationships with Iran, Hamas and major Arab powers as well as with the Palestinians and with Israel, has repeatedly accused the United States and the West of ignoring the need for an independent Palestinian state within 1967 borders.

Israel launched its offensive after the militant Hamas group’s Oct. 7 rampage inside Israel.

(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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